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removed himself from these discussions. harry reid, president obama, and a little bit of mitch mcconnell. what is possible of making a deal? >> the ball seems to be in mitch mcconnell's court. does he filibuster anything that harry reid ends up making with president obama? we have a paired down legislation extending for income below $250,000 and doing something with unemployment insurance that you were talking about? the question is a senate filibuster, democrats need 60 votes and republican votes, mcconnell ends up filibustering and will there be senators who support the legislation and blocking the filibuster. a lot of gymsmanship and republicans when you lock at the situation in the house and the inability to pass along the other things, they are on the verge of taking a lot of blame if they filibuster the legislation and the house doesn't act on it. >> and only democratic support developing here. how much is he going to agree with the president when he has the election in 2014? some folks don't want to appear in any way too close to president obama right now. >> let's move on in term
tomorrow afternoon. host: both majority leader harry reid and mitch mcconnell both expressed optimism after the meeting with the president. what is the basis of their optimism? is this a sign we might be one step, two steps, through step closer to a deal? caller: it does appear we are a step closer to a deal. they are talking about doing is extraordinarily popular stuff. except for the big marquee item, which is letting taxes rise on the wealthy. the rest of the stuff they are looking at doing the stuff they do all the time. it is extending an expiring tax policies. they know the benefit businesses. extent college tuition credits. there are looking at protecting people from the alternative minimum tax. it is all very urgent stuff that needs to be done. there are only two remotely controversial pieces of this, that is what to do with the estate tax and to how to define the wealthy people whose taxes are going to go up. the rest of it is, basically protecting people from tax hikes. i guess extending unemployment benefits and sometimes controversial for the republicans. it appears to have agre
, steny could have come up with a better met it at that for than that. that was senator reid and mcconnell and congressman hoyer in washington. brian sullivan is here and refuse rend al sharpton and richard wolf on assignment and joining us on set is rana and in washington eugene robinson. gene, thanks for getting dragged out of bed this morning. what was your initial reaction watching that clip of those three guys talking about this thing? >> you know, where are we? my initial feeling was this isn't going anywhere, and we have to go over the cliff and then they'll fix it. that's amy initial reaction. it doesn't sound like there's anything productive happening, if that's what everybody is still saying about the state of the negotiations. there don't seem to be any real negotiations. >> i have to say, i ought thought this is exactly where we'd be right now. in the beginning i couldn't believe it. >> why did you think that? >> because she's smarter than you. >> i middle east everybody is. >> i called up our washington bureau chief who is smart. right after the elections when everybody starte
. there are two good signs for optimism today. one is that leader mcconnell is actively engaged. you can't pass anything in the senate without democratic and republican votes because of the 60-vote barrier. we only have 53. for the first time, leader mcconnell is speaking to the president. if the senate is going to be the place where action starts, you need both of them there. the second reason for optimism is boehner is back at the table. because you can't pass something just through the senate. we see what a mess the house is. they couldn't even pass speaker boehner's own plan b. the fact that he's come back and the four of them are at the table means to me we could come up with some kind of agreement that would avoid the main parts of the fiscal cliff, particularly taxes going up on middle class people. now, i am hopeful, and it can be a balanced package. we've always said it should be a balanced package. the problem has not been democrats being willing to do cuts. we did $1 trillion of them last year. we're willing to do more this year. the problem is revenues. >> senator thune, if we go ov
have to have that first vote done in a timely way so that both senator reid and senator mcconnell can leave to have the designated meeting with president obama. mr. cochran: mr. president, let me join with the senator from maryland in commending all senators for the expeditious way we've been able to move this bill but particularly the chairwoman herself, who's provided strong leadership, capable leadership, fairness, a sense of fairness for all senators, and i thank her for the honor of serving with her on this committee. the presiding officer: under the previous order, the senate senatorses can attend the weekly caucus meetings. this morning they approve and extension of the farm intelligence v it allows the government to continue intercepting overseas communication. it extends legal immunity phone companies that help the government wiretap the domestic phone calls. president obama plans to sign the bill. when the senate is back we are expecting senators to continued work on the $60 billion hurricane sandy relief package. negotiations continue on avoiding the so-called fiscal cliff.
Search Results 0 to 4 of about 5